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Stories by Beth Accomando

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Comic-Con Begins!

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Wednesday night the 45th San Diego Comic-Con kicks off with preview night. Comic-Con began in a hotel basement and now takes over the entire San Diego Convention Center, sprawls out into the Gaslamp Quarter, attracts 125,000 attendees and pours more than $135 million into the San Diego economy.

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Batman, Zombies And Whovians To Descend On Comic-Con

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Preview night for Comic-Con is Wednesday, but vendors are arriving already with the bigger, more elaborate booths beginning to be unloaded Monday at the San Diego Convention Center.

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Review: 'Video Games: The Movie' Offers A Feel-Good Look At Gaming

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Video games have become a $24 billion a year business, surpassing movies, but they still don’t get much respect and are often the object of criticism. But "Video Games: The Movie" (opening July 18 at the Digital Gym Cinema) serves up a celebration of gaming.

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Cinema Under The Stars Offers Perfect Setting For Outdoor Movies

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With summer in full swing you might not want to waste a balmy night inside a darkened theater. So how about spending an evening under the stars with Audrey Hepburn and Peter O’Toole?

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San Diego Fringe 2014 Awards

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San Diego International Fringe wrapped on Sunday. Here are the shows that took home the awards.

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Surf's Up At Mingei's New Exhibit

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The Mingei’s new exhibit, Surf Craft, challenges stereotypes with its look at the design and the culture of board riding.

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San Diego Fringe Final Day

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This is the last day of the second annual San Diego International Fringe and if you haven't gone there are final performances of some great, fun shows.

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Review: 'Le Chef' Serves Up French Confection

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Last month, Jon Favreau served up a comedy about an American chef pursuing his gastronomic passions. Now "Le Chef" (opening July 11 at Landmark's Hillcrest Cinemas) delivers food porn with a French twist.

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San Diego Fringe: 'Dr. Frankenstein' Delivers Best In Show

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Last night I saw not just the best play at San Diego Fringe 2014 but also one of the best theater experiences I’ve ever had in my life at Tin Shed Theatre Company’s “Dr. Frankenstein’s Travelling Freakshow.”

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Batman: The Complete Television Series At Comic-Con

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Holy geekgasm! “Batman: The Complete Television Series” finally comes out on BluRay and Comic-Con will host a panel featuring Adam West, Burt Ward and Julie Newmar!

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San Diego Fringe: 'Pretending Things Are A C*ck' Showcases Australia's Jon Bennett

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You have one more chance to catch Jon Bennett's hilarious and revealing comedy show "Pretending Things Are A C*ck." The final performance is 3:30 p.m. Monday at the Tenth Avenue Theater as part of San Diego Fringe. NOTE: Contains explicit content.

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Film Review: 'A Hard Day's Night' Still Rocks 50 Years Later

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At the time of its release, critic Andrew Sarris proclaimed "A Hard Day's Night" as "the ‘Citizen Kane’ of juke box musicals." A digitally restored “A Hard Day's Night” opens July 10 at two San Diego County theaters for a limited run.

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San Diego Fringe: Anna Yanushkevich's 'Nocturnicon' Dazzles

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San Diego Fringe is in full swing with 80 shows from around the world at multiple venues. But one homegrown production worth checking out is Anna Yanushkevich's "Nocturnicon" (playing July 6, 11, 12, and 13) at the Ocean Beach Playhouse.

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San Diego Fringe Provides Sensory Overload

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San Diego Fringe Festival has kicked off its second season with hundreds of performers from San Diego and abroad providing an intense 11 days of innovative theater.

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Review: 'Beast Wishes' Celebrates The Delightful Bob Burns

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If you don’t know who Bob Burns is, then there’s a gap in your pop culture knowledge that can be fixed with the documentary "Beast Wishes," screening Sunday at 5 p.m. at the Digital Gym Cinema. Bob and Kathy Burns will be there.

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The Globe's 'Othello' Tackles Race, Gender, And The Mystery Of Iago

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With “Othello” (running through July 27), The Old Globe proves that Shakespeare’s 400-year-old plays are timeless because the themes he dealt with are human and universal.

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Film Review: 'Violette' Fueled By Passion

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If the new "Transformers: Age of Extinction" is too big, loud, and empty-headed, then turn to "Violette" (opening Friday at Landmark's La Jolla Village Theaters), a smart, literate, French film, for relief.

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'El Henry' Gives Shakespeare A 'Mad Max' Spin

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Shakespeare goes "Mad Max" as part of the La Jolla Playhouse/San Diego Rep Without Walls site-specific program. Go to the post-apocalyptic San Diego of “El Henry” (running through June 29 at SILO in Makers Quarter).

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AAAHHHRRRTTT!!!: A Star Wars Art Show

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George Lucas' "Star Wars" films have inspired a diverse array of fan art and merchandise. Tuesday night Thumbprint Gallery serves up a one-night exhibit of 'Star Wars"-inspired works from San Diego artists.

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Review: 'The Arrival Of Wang' Is Something To Celebrate

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Italian cinema is best known for neo-realism, spaghetti westerns and Sophia Loren. But Thursday at the Digital Gym Cinema you can find a rare science fiction film courtesy of the San Diego Italian Film Festival.

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Finest City Improv: Staging Comic Mutiny And Fearless, Unscripted Comedy

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Finest City Improv promises mutiny and fearless, unscripted comedy. Find out what it takes to create improv.

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Sledgehammer Returns With Beckett's 'Happy Days'

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Sledgehammer Theatre is back but has dropped “theater” from its name to announce a new brand and mission. Its production of Samuel Beckett’s 'Happy Days' runs through June 8 at Tenth Avenue Theater.

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IDW Publishing Celebrates 15 Years In San Diego

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IDW Publishing has been one of the top five comic publishers for almost five years. The San Diego based company celebrates its 15th anniversary by expanding to big-box board games and opening an entertainment division to produce TV shows.

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Review: Sam Shepherd Heats Up 'Cold In July'

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In a summer of superhero action, "Cold in July" (opening May 30 for one week only at Landmark's Ken Cinema) brings conflicts down to a human scale.

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FilmOut Preview: 16th Annual Festival Pared Down To Intense 3-Day Weekend

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FilmOut, San Diego’s LGBT Film Festival, kicks off its 16th year this Friday. Here's a preview.

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Review: 'X-Men: Days Of Future Past' Proves Best In Franchise

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“X-Men: Days of Future Past” (opened May 23 throughout San Diego) is the best film in the X-Men film franchise but that comes with a qualifier: I haven’t been impressed by any of the previous films.

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'Chasing The Song' Musical Goes 'Page To Stage' At Playhouse

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Last year La Jolla Playhouse debuted a play development program called DNA New Works Series. "Chasing the Song" was given a concert reading through that workshop and now it returns to the Playhouse for a Page-to-Stage production.

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Midday Movies: A Geek Roundtable Talks About New And Classic Godzilla Films

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Gareth Edwards' new "Godzilla" movie opened over the weekend and stomped the competition at the box office. The film roared past the estimated $70 million for its opening weekend with a domestic gross of $93 million and a worldwide haul of $196 million.

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Review: 'The Double' Serves Up Delectable Dark Comedy

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Russian author Fyodor Dostoevsky is not often adapted to the big screen, perhaps because his themes often turn dark. But his novella “The Double” (opening May 16 at Landmark’s Ken Cinema) proves perfect material for the multi-talented Richard Ayoade.

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Review: Why Is Godzilla A Supporting Player In His Own Movie?

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It’s been 60 years since Godzilla was born out of an atomic blast that woke him from the ocean depths. It’s been a decade since he last appeared on film. Now he arrives in a new American film, “Godzilla 2014” (opening May 16 -- but with early shows tonight -- throughout San Diego) directed by Gareth Edwards.

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San Diego Opera And Ken Cinema Present 'A Night At The Opera'

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Good things can come from bad. Landmark's Ken Cinema almost closed and now Landmark is working with San Diego Opera on a fundraiser to help that organization stay open as well. Woo-hoo!

Founding Bon Jovi Member-Turned-Composer's Work On La Jolla Playhouse Stage

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David Bryan's transition from keyboardist and founding member of the band Bon Jovi to Broadway composer continues at the La Jolla Playhouse.

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Review: 'Locke' is Tom Hardy's One-Man Show

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As Hollywood strives to open up films and make them bigger and flashier, the new film "Locke" (opening May 9 at Landmark's Hillcrest Cinemas) does the exact opposite and kicks ass.

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Concert: Italy's Progressive Rock Band Goblin

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In the 1970s Italian horror films were often defined by their vivid scores, many of which were created by the band Goblin. The Italian progressive rock group finally made its first U.S. tour last October. The group plays the House of Blues in San Diego on Friday night.

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Museum Of Making Music: The Banjo

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The Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad says its ultimate purpose is to make the world more musical. Visitors can get their hands on an electric banjo and make music as loud as they want at the museum’s new exhibit The Banjo; A New Day for an Old Instrument.

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Interview: San Diego-Based Liberty Studios Filmmakers

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This weekend audiences can show their support for a film produced by the San Diego based Liberty Studios. Local filmmakers Mark Schmidt and Randy Williams talk about “Walking with the Enemy” (opening April 25 in select San Diego theaters).

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It's Official: Ken To Remain A Landmark Theatre

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Landmark Theatres and the Berkun Family Trust have both confirmed that they have reached a new agreement and the venerable Ken Cinema will remain under Landmark Theatres' operation.

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At 127, Sherlock Holmes Is Still Popular

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Sherlock Holmes is looking pretty good for someone past the century mark. Come investigate the Coronado Playhouse’s production of "Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure" to uncover why the famous sleuth remains so popular.

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Museum Of Making Music

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The Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad allows people to gain a deeper understanding of music, how it is made, and how people create and use instruments. Its latest special exhibit focuses on the banjo.

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Interview: Richard E. Grant

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Richard E. Grant may not be a household name in the U.S. but he is much beloved by indie film fans who remember him dearly in films such as "Withnail and I" and "How to Get Ahead in Advertising." Now he reinvents himself for a new generation with "Dom Hemingway."

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Review: 'Dom Hemingway'

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Richard Shepard has a way of reinventing actors. He did that with Pierce Brosnan in "Matador," now he does the same for Jude Law and Richard E. Grant in "Dom Hemingway" (opening April 18 at Landmark's Hillcrest Cinemas).

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Preview: Pac-Arts Spring Showcase

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Pac-Arts kicks off its fourth annual Spring Showcase on Thursday. KPBS' film critic Beth Accomando gives a preview of the film lineup.

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Remembering The Ken And 'Rocky Horror'

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For many in San Diego, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" at The Ken Cinema will always be something special to remember.

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Ken Cinema Closing As A Landmark Theatre

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UPDATE: Landmark, Building owners, and property management company have since renegotiated the lease and Landmark will continue to operate the Ken Cinema.

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Rants And Raves: TCM Film Festival

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Over the weekend I attended my first Turner Classic Movies Film Festival in Hollywood. Pure ecstasy.

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Screening: 'Ride With Larry'

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In honor of Parkinson’s Awareness Month, there will be two screenings of the documentary "Ride with Larry" (April 13 at 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. at La Paloma Theater in Encinitas).

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Rants And Raves: 'Taste'

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Filmmaker and stage director Stuart Gordon loves cooking shows so naturally he was drawn to a play about people who eat each other. See what he’s serving up with “Taste” (opening April 11 at Sacred Fools Theater in Hollywood).

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Review: 'The Raid 2: Berandal'

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Two years ago “The Raid Redemption” gave action junkies the kind of fix they dream about. Now the sequel, “The Raid 2: Berandal” (opening April 11 in select theaters) arrives on the scene.

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Review: 'Alan Partridge'

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British comedian Steve Coogan was just nominated for a writing Oscar for last year’s "Philomena." But he’s more in his element in the comedy "Alan Partridge" (opening April 11 at Landmark's Hillcrest Cinemas) where he reprises a role he created in the early 1990s for BBC TV.

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Rants And Raves: Opera

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San Diego Opera's "Don Quixote" may be the last opera produced by the company. I saw a performance Tuesday night that made me think about opera in history.